AMD Adrenalin Driver Update Breaks Some Older Games

the witcher enhanced edition

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AMD Adrenalin Driver Update Breaks Some Older Games

January 2, 2018

By: Alex Santa Maria

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CD Projekt Red
CD Projekt
Release Date
May 18, 2015
Open World, RPG
Purchase (Some links may be affiliated)

AMD's most recent Adrenalin driver release (17.12.1) has been found to cause crashing in games ranging from The Witcher: Enhanced Edition to Command and Conquer 3, according to numerous gamers posting on official forums and Reddit. This seems to be caused by older implementations of DirectX9 in these releases, and more recent DX9 games such as Team Fortress 2 and Borderlands 2 are running without issue.

AMD's original response to the issue has been erased but was preserved on Reddit and is replicated below.

This title is from 2007, so we are unlikely to devote any valuable engineering resources to this issue, which is most likely caused by outdated API modules.
Released last month, 17.12.1 includes fixes for Overwatch and Mass Effect: Andromeda alongside social networking features for the company's Radeon software suite. The full list of confirmed games that upon launch after installing the new update is below.
  • Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars
  • Command & Conquer 3: Kane's Wrath
  • Command & Conquer 3: Red Alert 3
  • Command & Conquer 3: Red Alert 3 Uprising
  • Command & Conquer 4: Tiberian Twilight
  • The Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle-earth
  • The Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle-earth II
  • The Witcher: Enhanced Edition
After reaching out directly, a contact at AMD gave us this updated response.
“We are aware of this driver issue and are investigating a fix.”
TechRaptor will continue to monitor the situation and update when these classic games are playable again. In the meantime, if you want to run them on your PC, you'll have to install older versions of the drivers which should allow you to launch them, although the improvements from the newest drivers obviously wouldn't be carried over.


Quick Take

One of the most appealing parts of the PC platform is its endless backward compatibility. Once a game is ported to PC, it's considered "safe" in the eyes of some preservationists. Events like this throw that mindset into question, although it's not a surprise considering the ever-widening gap in technological prowess between AMD and rival NVidia. Thankfully, another great part of PC gaming is that development isn't locked down to the big companies. If AMD can't come up with a fix, someone else will most likely step in to make these games run again. It's an unfortunate solution, but that's the reality of keeping games ever compatible with the wildly different architectures of 2017.
Alex Santa Maria TechRaptor
Former Reviews Editor

TechRaptor's Former Reviews Editor (2015-2020). Resident fan of pinball, Needlers, roguelikes, and anything with neon lighting. Owns an office chair once used by Billy Mays.

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